Blue-state Bernie and the DNC’s Plutocratic “Victory” Rules

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The Clinton “victory” is a congeries of “rotten boroughs,” conflicted Superdelegates, exclusionary primaries, and disinformation. If the run-off process were conducted in a democratic manner, these devices would all be barred by Democratic National Committee (DNC) rules.

Hillary Clinton is piecing together a superficially successful campaign on the basis of rotten boroughs, many of them former slave states, where it is certain that there will not be a single electoral vote cast for a Democrat or any party which represents a progressive and diverse electorate. Clinton also depends upon Superdelegates who have conflicts of interest because they have worked for, received money from, or are otherwise integrated into the systemic legalized corruption of the Clinton political machine. Clinton has been further aided by obvious disinformation about her electability and experience, and other features of a broken presidential run-off system. The money-stream media labels this money-bag of tricks “victory.”

Sanders’ campaign has committed itself, as a consolation prize should it fail to secure the nomination, to make some rules changes at the Convention. Changing the rules should be an integral part of the campaign and a condition of the participation of Sanders’ delegates in the Democratic Convention. Adopting fair rules for nominating a presidential candidate would be an alternative to a Philadelphia replay of 1968 by Millennials saddled with so much debt they were practically born in default and outlawed by a financialized state.

  

Michael Moore predicts, “I’m optimistic that the person who is most popular will win the contest.” But Moore’s political predictions are often wrong or selfcontradictory. Without democratizing DNC rules it is possible that the most popular candidate will not win. Changes in the rules could determine the Democratic nominee by relegating Clinton’s “victories” back to the plutocratic mire where they originated. Followers of British Premier League football would understand the concept of relegation to the lower division. Blue and purple states are the Premier League of the Democratic Party which command all its votes in the Electoral College. Primary contests held by the relegated red-states would be conducted as straw polls having no impact on the Premier League play.  

Similarly historic rules changes such as those enumerated below were made in 1972 as a result of the 1968 rejection of a boss-ridden Democratic Party. The 1972 reforms were significant. They led to Carter’s outsider victory in 1976. But they remain incomplete, and Superdelegates were created to let the boss-system back in the door. The Clintons are the new boss. Just like the old boss, “Hillary has billionaires galore in her corner.”

The current state-based national run-off system for selecting a president is a hodgepodge of procedures that run the gamut from fair and democratic in some states, like Minnesota which prides itself on clean elections and high turnouts, to easily corruptible and exclusionary in states with low-turnout and unrepresentative results.

 A state like Minnesota uses exclusively paper ballots, hand counted by neighbors at the precinct level. There was no room in Minnesota’s process for the statistically troubling allegation of an 8% Massachusetts discrepancy between exit polls, which showed Sanders winning comfortably as one would expect, and the machine-counted tally to the contrary.

Rule changes at the level of the DNC could correct or compensate for the lack of minimal national run-off election standards. Several systemic flaws could be removed by changing Convention rules that are currently designed to tilt the results toward plutocracy, which means Clinton and her “billionaires galore.”

Public demand for reform of DNC rules starting now would address these several most important methods by which plutocrats manipulate a corrupt and venal party. Failure to change the rules may result in the nomination of the least favored and least likely to succeed among two candidates, when the other of those two candidates has gained favor among the general electorate by credibly resolving to overthrow plutocracy.

1. Rotten Boroughs

The propagandist mass media has already awarded Clinton the first stage of the run-off election. This is not based on Clinton squeezing out a narrow one pledged-delegate victory in the reliably blue-state Massachusetts, but rather on her series of victories in states which for more than a generation have not contributed a single electoral vote to a Democrat who was not resident in the region.

Excluding these “rotten borough” states from the scorecard, the current count is that Sanders has won blue states 3-1, with 1-1 tie in purple states, and a virtual tie in Nevada which is purple. Even the one blue state ascribed to Clinton, Massachusetts, might be viewed as a virtual tie, especially in light of the unexplained exit-poll anomaly which argues for a blanket DNC rule change discounting the weight of any ballot from states that are not made on paper, and subject to hand re-count.

A “rotten borough” is a depopulated election district that retains its original representation though hardly anyone lives there any more. The term was originally used to describe the English voting system that founders like Thomas Paine ridiculed as part of the corrupt system that they revolted against. Before the Civil Rights Era, when the Republican and Democratic parties switched positions on Jim Crow, the southern states were well populated with electoral votes for the party of secession and segregation. But starting with Nixon’s opportunistic 1968 Southern Strategy response to the landmark civil rights legislation of the middle 1960’s, and especially after that strategy was further refined by Reagan in 1980 and financed by the newly legalized money of plutocrats, there have been effectively no electoral votes for Democrats in the deep South, aside from those for “favorite sons,” Carter and Clinton. Since then, even that tactic has not broken the solid south. In 2000, hapless Al Gore lost the election because he couldn’t even borrow a few electoral votes from his home state of Tennessee, or from any other former slave state state.

Like it or not, Americans select their presidents by an indirect Electoral College process specified in the Constitution. This process enacts a compromise between majoritarian democracy and de-centralizing federalism. “Despite the media-hyped fascination with election night, there has never been a true national election for President.” You and I don’t vote for president. Electors do. Electors represent states. Therefore delegates at nominating conventions representing state electors, for which the rest of us are only proxies, until elections in each state determine those electors in accordance with state laws.

Most states assign electoral votes on a winner-take-all basis. We all know those red states and blue states, where one party has a lock on the electoral votes, and also the few purple states where they do not. Red and blue states, for purposes of the Electoral College, are rotten boroughs respectively for Democrats and Republicans. No blue electors have resided in red states for many years. For example, no Democrat elector has shown up in a Plains State in the half century since the 1964 landslide against Goldwater, when the Republicans ran a candidate who was honest about his right-wing beliefs, rather than tricky, devious, corrupt and therefore capable of reversing that landslide just 8 years later, as Richard Nixon did.

Democrats, for all practical purposes, have exactly zero potential for finding a single electoral vote from all the deepest red states combined. If Republicans should, after a half century. nominate another honest right-wing politician like Goldwater to enable another Democratic landslide, the otherwise unexpected electoral votes from the red states would not be essential to victory in any event.

For a generation, the deep south states of South Carolina and the Super TuesdayGeorgia, Alabama, and Texas have been well-established as deep red. Three of them have not delivered a Democratic electoral vote in two generations. Along with Clintons’ Super Tuesday Arkansas and Tennessee, all these reliably red former slave states are the base on which Clinton is building her supposed (by the plutocratic media) SuperTuesday “major victory” over Sanders giving her “full command” of the race now.

On “Super Saturday,” Clinton continued her string of successes with red former slave states, in Louisiana. But she lost to Sanders in two deep red Plains States, Kansas and Nebraska. In a country that likes to side with winners, her lopsided delegate harvest in the red former slave states makes effective propaganda and will likely shave points off Sanders’ blue state victories, if believed.

No one explains why delegates from any of these deep red states, whether for Clinton or Sanders, should have a vote at the Democratic National Convention. To a very high degree of certainty based on long experience, all those red-state delegates together will not represent one single vote for the Democratic nominee when the Electoral College selects a president. Red state delegates are proven by past experience to predictably represent no Democratic constituent in the Electoral College, which is the only vote that counts. Since the rules were made in 1972 the parties have completed their switch of regional loyalties. Then loyalties were still in flux. In 1976, Jimmy Carter carried the solid south that George Wallace carried in 1968. But since 1980 the two parties have barely wavered across the blue-red divide in typically close elections. The respective regional bases of the two parties are now clear. The system must be revised to account for the creation of Democratic rotten boroughs since 1980.

It is self-delusion to think that the minority of Democratic voters in red states, whose voting strength for Electoral College electors will predictably be zero, actually count for anything. By force of winner-take-all state laws, they do not. Those votes are effectively canceled by law. Electors represent the state, not individual voters, in the Electoral College. Red states predictably deliver Republican electors.

 It was a wise man [Aristotle] who said that there is no greater inequality than the equal treatment of unequals.” Dennis v. United States, 339 U.S. 162, 184 (1950) (Frankfurter, J.) Treating delegates from states who will make no essential contribution to victory in the Electoral College equally in the nominating Convention with those who will is to treat unequals as equals — the greatest form of injustice or discrimination. Fantasies to the contrary cannot change the fact that red states will in fact represent no future Democratic elector at all.

As Justice Holmes famously said, Frank v. Mangum (1915): “This is not a matter for polite presumptions; we must look facts in the face.” Democratic votes in deep red states are no more relevant to the outcome of electing a president than if they were never cast. If they did not turn up for the Convention at all, it could only improve the outcome of the election by eliminating an irrelevant distraction. Their attendance raises no problem; their equal voting strength without contributing equal electoral votes to the Electoral College does.

The delusion that red states are anything else but rotten boroughs for Democrats is based on the “polite presumption” that presidents are elected by all the people. This myth is in denial of the fact that presidents are actually selected by the Electoral College, whose membership is all that matters. Red states voluntarily construct their winner-take-all presidential voting rules (as almost all states do) to create a Democratic rotten borough for purposes of the Electoral College vote. There is no valid principle that should require the blue states to give those rotten boroughs voting rights at their presidential nominating Convention in which blue and purple states represent the entirety of the electoral votes needed to win. Since the rotten boroughs contribute no electors, the eternal principle rejecting treatment of unequals as if they are equal must be applied.

For rotten boroughs to have any say in the decision about the best candidate to produce the number of electors that are necessary to win a majority of blue and purple states in the Electoral College is both counterproductive for purposes of effective nomination strategy and also discriminatory toward those who should in all fairness make that decision. The power to nominate should be solely in the hands of those states who will produce the nominee’s victory, shared in proportion to their fairly determined expected contribution to the Electoral College victory.

Rotten boroughs were first declared unconstitutional in the Baker v Carr line of cases. This is considered one of the great Supreme Court reforms of American democracy. But the rotten borough system lives on in the Democratic Party to dilute the influence at the nominating Convention of a reliably blue state like Minnesota. This injustice is supported by inappropriately directed sentimentality about inclusion of fellow Democrats in red states. This may be the product of a logical glitch in the liberal brain.See Chris Mooney, The Republican Brain (2012).

Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote in Reynolds v Sims (1964), the case that established the democratic principle of one person one vote, that trees or acres” should not be represented in legislatures. Similarly states should not be represented in making a nomination whose electoral votes will with mathematical certainty be cast not for, but against, the nominee of the blue and purple states. It is the prospective Democratic electors made by blue and purple states to the Electoral College that must be equally represented.

The weight of a Democratic delegate’s vote can only fairly and properly be determined by the share of Democratic electoral votes the delegates state represents, as that can best be determined from past experience. Giving away equal voting power to states who represent no such electoral votes dilutes the voting power of those delegates who do represent electoral votes. Awarding votes as if every election will be a landslide, shut-out victory for Democrats is a fantasy that results in discrimination. “[W]e must look facts in the face.”

As Chief Justice Warren said in Reynolds: “Overweighting and overvaluation of the votes of those living here [rotten boroughs] has the certain effect of dilution and undervaluation of the votes of those living there. The resulting discrimination against those individual voters living in disfavored areas is easily demonstrable mathematically. Their right to vote is simply not the same right to vote as that of those living in a favored [rotten borough] State. Two, five, or 10 of them must vote before the effect of their voting is equivalent to that of their favored [rotten borough] neighbor.” The “favored neighbor” in the DNC rotten borough system are the red states most susceptible to corrupt plutocratic influence.

A DNC rule change could very simply abolish this undemocratic, and questionably constitutional, system. The rule change would mathematically discount the weight of votes of rotten borough states. Currently, the weight of a delegation’s vote is based on their theoretical contribution to the electoral college. One factor is the variable number of electoral votes in each state. The adjustment would be determined on the basis of the actual historic, not theoretical, contribution to Democratic membership in the Electoral College. Voters made irrelevant by state law because they are insufficient in number to support a single elector should not be allowed to dilute the voting strength of delegates from states that do reliably send electors to the College. In an Electoral College system, electors should be the determining factor for awarding equal representation in the nominating Convention, not individual voters.

The new formula would end the false pretense that, since a nominating Convention necessarily precedes an election, blue state delegates must suspend disbelief that red state delegates represent anything but a rotten borough devoid of any remote prospect for delivering essential Democratic electors.

Drafting and enforcing such a rule banning discrimination against blue and purple state voters is simple. The Electoral College results in the previous election provides the most relevant evidence whether any potential electors are resident in any state. The voting strength of a state determined by its number of electors should be cut by 50% if the state produced no electoral votes in the previous election. The remaining 50% weighted voting strength would be reduced a further 20%, 15% 10% and 5% for each previous election where no Democratic electors show up in the state, for a full generation back in time. Voting strength declines to zero if a state has contributed no Democratic electoral vote in the last 20 years – which is longer than the lifetime of the youngest born-bankrupt Millennial. A 20-year missing persons statute of limitations would thus run on any continuing pretense that prospective electors are likely to show up in a rotten borough state, and, therefore, should be represented based on that fiction at the next Convention. This adjustment of voting strength would apply to every deep red state named above that Clinton won and is currently being promoted as supporting her “victory.” The case against counting such red state delegates is even stronger in the Plains States that Sanders won, which have furnished Democratic electors only once in eighty years. 

The DNC should stop the pretense Clinton won anything in these red states by stripping voting rights from delegates representing rotten boroughs. In a democratically organized primary system her “big victory” would thus add up to zero delegates, and she would have to concentrate her triumphal celebrations on that one delegate victory in Massachusetts.

To repeat one last time, when the only rational conclusion is that no Democratic electors live in a state, since they have not shown up at the Electoral College for a generation, then that state should have no voting delegates at the nominating Convention. Giving voting power for non-existent electors only serves to unfairly dilute the voting power of those states where Democratic electors have resided and voted for more than a generation, or even two, in the case of Minnesota.

To give delegates votes where they represent no electors is no different than enfranchising a rotten borough. Aside from being inherently undemocratic by treating unequals as equal, rotten boroughs have always been more prone to corruption and manipulation by powerful interests.

2. Exclusionary primaries

A principal means by which corrupt political parties rig elections is by keeping tight monopoly control over their ballot access privilege. The United States, more than virtually any other country in the world, is a two party system which structurally marginalizes third parties to the point of irrelevance, or worse. Control over one of the two ballot slots conveys very valuable duopoly political power. This gives rise to a multiplicity of means by which political parties rig primary elections, mainly for the purpose of excluding the participation of independents. In this way, the duopoly can consistently provide two bad choices for general election voters, as evidenced by American typically low voter turnout by those who reject them both.

Sanders consistently wins the support of Independent voters in exit and other polls. Independents are 40% of the electorate compared to Democrats who barely reach 30%, a number that will likely continue to decline as the party’s corrupt election rigging techniques become even more visible in 2016. Independent voters determine the outcome of general elections. If they get turned off the Democratic Party due to its transparent election rigging, Democrats will lose in November to Trump who at least keeps a straight face when pretending to be a post-plutocracy plutocrat. Since Independents determine presidential elections, factoring their choices into the run-off process is essential to victory, as it has been to Trumps’.

Different approaches to primary elections range from, say, Minnesota’s, which has an entirely open process requiring little more than future voter eligibility and a signature to participate, to a state like Massachusetts which is not so open, to states like New York that are closed. In Minnesota, a solid blue state that has consistently contributed all its electoral votes to Democrats for the two generations since 1976, Sanders accordingly defeated Clinton with a landslide vote of 61-38% on Super Tuesday, in a historic turnout second only to 2008. This was comparable to Sanders’ landslide in his neighboring New Hampshire, and was just exceeded in Kansas. In Massachusetts, by contrast, Sanders ran almost even. The Super Tuesday and other states range across this spectrum from open to closed, giving their results variable validity in representing the actual preferences of general election voters.

The DNC cannot by itself change this variable discrimination in different states against Independent voters. It was unsuccessful in trying ad hoc discipline of state primary practices in Michigan and Florida in 2008. Discrimination against voters that the party will need to win the general election is usually rooted in state laws which the corrupt parties have created for their mutual duopolistic benefit. But the DNC rules committee could immediately ameliorate this problem with a rule change demonstrating its commitment to a democratic run-off process. The rule change would compensate for this bias by making an adjustment in delegate voting strength.

Comparable to the proposed remedy for the rotten borough problem, such a rule would handicap each state’s procedures on the spectrum from open to closed. The adjustment would deduct voting strength to the extent a state party chooses to distort voter preference by restrictive processes which tend to misstate the relative prospects of different candidates in the general election. Voting delegate strength at the Convention would be adjusted to favor the voting strength of delegates selected by open primary voting, like Minnesota, over those selected by closed primary voting, like New York. This adjustment would attempt to approximate the likely Democratic general election voters’ actual choice for a nominee rather than a manipulated choice designed to represent a candidate’s share of only 30% of the electorate who Independents might well dislike.

Why should a state that runs a tightly controlled primary that deliberately misrepresents the actual preferences of voters have the same weight as Minnesota, which seeks to allow everyone interested to participate, and thereby also more reliably contributes to Democratic electoral votes year in and year out?

Failing to make this rule change would continue to condone election rigging by excluding or deterring the 40% of Independents from entering a winning coalition by participating in the run-off process. Manipulating the process to privilege a plutocratic nominee is not a winning strategy in an election year when such political corruption and rigging of the system is foremost in many voters’ minds, especially of the Independents who will decide its outcome.

3. Disinformation

Virginia is the only state that is not a deep red state where Clinton has crushed Sanders, nearly two to one, as Sanders crushed Clinton in the blue states of Minnesota by 23% and of New Hampshire by about the same margin. Virginia was previously a red state along with the other former slave states upon which Clinton has built her “major victory.” Virginia shifted to Obama in 2008 and 2012. It can now be called a purple state on its way to claiming blue status, if the trend continues.

Washington Post exit polls of Virginia voters raise another issue for which the solution is somewhat more elaborate than the other rule changes discussed here. This issue no doubt also affects Clinton’s other delegates, especially from red states where reliable information about national Democratic politics is far more scarce than in blue states. Delegates from the red states would be eliminated by the above “rotten borough” rule change in any event. So the analysis in this section will focus solely on Virginia.

The Virginia exit polls tell us that the 52% of Dem primary voters who expressed a preference for a candidate who “Can win in November” or one who “Has right experience” overwhelmingly voted for Clinton. Meanwhile the 47% of voters who prefer a candidate who “Cares about people like me” or who is “Honest and trustworthy” tended to prefer Sanders by lesser, though still respectable, majorities (56% and 78%, respectively).

One must ask whether the experience of Clinton which is preferred by these voters is that of selling US foreign policy for the benefit of the Clinton Foundation as described by Peter Schweizer, Clinton Cash (2015), or the experience of defending herself against an FBI investigation for national security breaches that may or may not be related, or Clinton’s destabilization and warmongering for the benefit of weapons manufacturers who pay her, as described in Diana Johnstone, Queen of Chaos: The Misadventures of Hillary Clinton (2015).

When fending off the accusation that her most significant “experience” has been her service to the plutocratic Establishment, Clinton admitted Sanders’ superior experience: “He’s been in Congress, he’s been elected to office a lot longer than I have.” The non-sequitur that experience in office could be considered interchangeable with serving plutocrats is beside the point of Clinton’s express acknowledgment of Sanders’ superior elected experience. Clinton is not even close to Sanders’ long-term experience in public service, including executive experience. The experience “advantage” relied upon by Clinton’s voters becomes even more ephemeral when one tries to pin it down to specific accomplishments as opposed to the “blur” of activity that obscures borderline criminality. Clinton Cash 101.

As to the second issue, that of Clinton voters’ preference for winning in November, every poll since December has shown Sanders defeating every Republican with significantly higher margins than Clinton, who some polls show actually losing such match-ups. This widespread misperception as to electability, which nevertheless motivates many Clinton voters, flies in the face of known fact.

Can anything be done about such Democratic voter ignorance on these two themes? It is primarily the consequence of pervasive mass media propaganda which is bought one way or another by plutocrats for their favored candidate. Propaganda cannot be regulated without enacting laws that the Scalia Supreme Court would have ruled unconstitutional. Cf. Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus, 573 U.S. ___ (2014).

There is an alternative solution which could be applied by a DNC rule change. This proposed change proceeds from an observation about the logic of holding extremely expensive conventions attended by voting delegates from all over the country to determine a nominee, rather than just performing an audit of primary results and tallying them up to determine the nominee. Behind this delegate convention practice is the notion that the delegates are supposed to exercise some form of judgment in selecting a nominee superior to that of the voters who sent them. This is comparable to elected officials when performing their delegated duties. Absent the concept that representative democracy can sometimes improve upon lesser-informed judgments of direct democracy, the PR Convention extravaganza could be held on its own, without the pretense of a deliberative nomination taking place just for purposes of doing the math.  

A way for the delegates to exercise their judgment in a way that would add value to the underlying math of the democratic process, so that the process could become more than the sum of its parts, would be to expose the delegates to objective relevant reality as a prerequisite to their exercising their discretion on who to nominate. A rule change could introduce a citizens jury process for the national conventions. This is a known technique to overcome the impact of propaganda on public discussion, in the same way that trial jurors make decisions based on an evidentiary process designed to uncover truth, rather than implement jurors’ preconceived biases.

By overcoming the effect of propaganda, exposure to some objective facts about the candidates could only improve the nomination process at best, and be harmless at worst. This is an innovative idea, of course. But is there a better way to counteract propaganda, other than banning it, which is unlikely in any near future in which plutocrats hide their influence behind the First Amendment? Before the delegates go ahead and commit party-suicide by nominating Hillary Clinton, should they not at least be exposed to a presentation by a neutral pollster on the consistent findings that Sanders is more likely to win in November as well as an honest neutral statement of the two candidates’ thoroughly vetted resumes detailing their actual experience and successes? No moderate sized company would hire a CEO without such due diligence. Is it too much to expect some slight gesture toward such diligence from the doorkeepers to the most powerful executive office in the world?

A formal vetting by professionals of a candidate’s resume for claimed experience could be subject to objective standards equally applicable to both candidates. Reporting on polling results can be objectively critiqued. The other two criteria, “Cares about people like me” or is “Honest and trustworthy” are not much susceptible to objective inquiry, barring a John Oliver-style body-slam (ironically recycled by Mitt Romney) in extreme cases. 

4. Conflicted Superdelegates and RBC Members

 The final problem requires a simple traditional rule to guard against straightforward conflict of interest corruption in the nomination process. To use Minnesota as an example again, its congressional delegation Superdelegates all support Clinton except for Keith Ellison who has endorsed Sanders. Yet their constituents overwhelmingly support Sanders. There is something wrong here. In 2008 Obama bought Superdelegates, and no doubt the same has occurred in 2016.

One solution to such blatant corruption is a rule binding all super delegates to vote the way their constituents have indicated. This, in effect, would get rid of the Superdelegate remnant of the old party-boss system that the Democratic Party used to select its presidential candidates until it selected Hubert Humphrey in 1968 notwithstanding the fact he had not won a single primary. The Party went into a tailspin from which it never really recovered, due in part to the long-term corrupting influence of Nixon’s four Supreme Court appointments which put the plutocratic party leadership at odds with the traditional Democratic constituency.

Short of scrapping the Superdelegate practice, those Superdelegates who have a conflict of interest as a result of receiving money or other substantial benefit from a candidate should, at least, be subject to robust enforcement of recusal rules, both in the Convention and on the important Rules and By-Laws Committee (RBC). 

It is the RBC which would decide upon the four rules suggested here. If the RBC were motivated to facilitate a democratically determined nomination that would win in November, rather than one distorted by conflicts of interest to support the worst candidate, they would adopt these rules. Therefore, application of robust conflict of interest recusal must begin with the RBC itself. 

Just one example of a clearly conflicted member of the RBC is Harold M. Ickes, a long-time Clinton advisor and a senior advisor to the independent “Ready for Hillary” super PAC. Ickes should not be a voting member of any rules committee proceedings that would affect the Clintons. Ickes was known as Bill Clinton’s “garbage man” for running interference on Clintonian corruption. Yet there he sits on the RBC prepared for further duty. When Ickes rejoined the Rules and Bylaws Committee, at least one longtime Democratic strategist raised her eyebrows. Said Donna Brazile, a fellow member of the rules committee: “He predated the Clinton era, but when I saw Harold reappointed to the D.N.C., he surely, in my judgment, symbolizes the return of the Clintons.” 

This is the kind of corrupt conflict of interest currently allowed to contaminate a committee that is supposed to make rules designed to fairly yield the best, most democratic and potentially successful choice, not the choice dictated by those obviously conflicted interests and their hopes of sharing in further spoils. 

In the absence of proof of an express quid pro quo deal, such conflicted persons will often defend, as Clinton herself defends her enormous legalized bribes from special interests, on the ground that he or she personally has superhuman resistance to ordinary human venality. But conflict of interest recusal does not rely on either proof of quid pro quo deals or disproof of such superhuman powers. “The reason for disqualifying a whole class on the ground of bias is the law’s recognition that, if the circumstances of that class, in the run of instances, are likely to generate bias, consciously or unconsciously, it would be a hopeless endeavor to search out the impact of these circumstances on the mind and judgment of a particular individual.” Dennis v. United States, 339 U.S. 162, 181 (1950) (Frankfurter, J.). Therefore if, like Ickes, any RBC member or Superdelegate has been on the Clintons’ payroll or a beneficiary of their corrupt political network – the quintessential Tammany Hall operation of the Second Gilded Age – then they must recuse without further evidence.

In response to just such overt Democratic Party corruption the Republican National Committee Chairman has publicized his party’s rejection of the undemocratic practice of Superdelegates. He could accurately characterize his Party to be, in this regard, “unlike on the Democratic side where they have Superdelegates and could give a darn about what the grassroots are telling the party. That’s not how we operate our party on our side.”

 This idea that the Republican Party presidential nomination apparatus is more democratic and less corrupt than the Democratic Party apparatus will make a powerful message to Independents looking for the least corrupt party in 2016, if Clinton wins nomination based on the anti-democratic rules discussed here. Of course Republicans can afford to maintain a fairer process because whoever it selects will either be a plutocrat promoted by a plutocratic mass media, or a corrupt politician owned by plutocrats. The Republican process does not need to cheat, like Democrats do, to prevent democracy from breaking out inside their Party from an anti-plutocratic base. Plutocracy is built-in for Republicans.

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Rob Hager, a Harvard Law graduate, is a public interest litigator [Agent Orange, Bhopal Disaster, Three Mile Island, Silkwood, Joe Harding, Parks Twp., Avirgan v. Hull. (am'd. compl. & mot. to dis. only), etc.] who filed amicus briefs in the Montana sequel to Citizens United and has worked as an international consultant on anti-corruption policy and legislation with the United Nations' and other development agencies. Rob Hager's most recent book, “Strategy for Democracy: Why And How To Get Money Out of Politics,” is currently available as a free ebook.

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